In the late 1700s, there was widespread apathy toward Bible reading. After the American Revolution, Enlightenment philosophy was popular, congratulating human achievement and reason. During this period, a man entered a bookstore in Philadelphia and asked to buy a Bible. The bookseller responded: "I have none. There is not a copy for sale in the city, and I can tell you further that in 50 years there will not be a Bible in the world." The customer's answer: "There will be plenty of Bibles in the world 1,000 years after you have died and gone to hell."
The customer's response was undiplomatic, but it drew attention to a key Biblical truth: Scripture stands. The Word of God endures. The Bible outlasts its critics and skeptics. The sacred written revelations from God will not collapse under the attacks of human defiance.
Isaiah 40:8- "The grass withers, the flower fades, but the word of our God will stand forever."
This is a truth worth bearing in mind when we see hard-line atheistic authors bashing the Bible--- and insulting those who take Scripture seriously. But, Scripture doesn't wilt or decay or fade away into oblivion. Nor does the gospel of Jesus Christ evaporate into nothing with the passage of time (see Jesus' words in Matt.24:35). The sinful human habits of ignoring and belittling Biblical truth fail to erase Biblical truth. The God of the Word has ways of preserving His Word, despite the sinister schemes of human beings who yearn for that Word to be extinguished forever.
In his book "Evidence that Demands a Verdict", Josh McDowell shared anecdotes concerning the hatred held by various people against the written Word of God. One of the Bible's most vocal enemies was Voltaire, an author who confidently predicted that within a century of his death, Christianity would pass out of existence and the Bible completely forgotten.
Voltaire died in 1778. Within 50 years of his death, the Geneva Bible Society utilized Voltaire's own printing press to produce stacks of Bibles.